Whole 30 – Week One

I’m writing this on Day 7 of my first Whole 30 in order to keep a record of what I ate and how I felt – and hopefully interest you in completing a Whole 30 at some point too!


With my Day 1 being the 1st of Jan, I took it pretty easy the night before. I started off with scrambled eggs with fresh parsley, sautéed mushrooms, spinach and smoked salmon which filled me up.

We decided to go for a walk around Hampstead Heath, so I snacked on a clementine prior to leaving. Note: The Whole 30 does not encourage snacks, but for my first week, I decided if I needed snacks/extra food to keep me sustained then I would allow them – so long as they were Whole 30 approved snacks!

I started to get anxious while we were walking that I would get hungry, and I didn’t have anything on me to eat, and how could I get something Whole 30 approved while we were out and about. So after a couple of hours we headed home for a salad with cooked chicken breast and a banana.

Dinner was AMAZING – organic steak with a cocoa/coffee rub, roasted sweet potatoes and zucchini. I’ll be posting recipes soon!

Throughout the day I was feeling good, until about 4pm when a headache started to come on. I couldn’t believe that this was a Whole 30 related headache – I was only two meals in to the plan! But before long the headache turned into a migraine and I ended up in bed at 8pm, having had 2 nurofen and then my migraine medication.



I woke up feeling terrible. The headache was still thumping, I felt foggy, ached all over and my throat was raw. I knew I was coming down with a cold (thanks Jase for passing that one on!). I slept and stayed in bed until 2pm – when I moved to the couch and slept some more.

Eats for the day were gentle – for breakfast I was badly craving comfort food, something like eggs on toast. Eggs on their own weren’t going to cut it – so instead I opted for a bowl of cut up fruit (orange, apple and banana) with 2 tsps of almond butter, which I snacked on as I needed.

For lunch I tucked into (what would have been my breakfast) a Salmon frittata I had pre-prepared with some kale chips.

Jase cooked dinner – chicken thighs and mixed veges stir-fried with some lemon and thyme seasoning – while I crawled back into bed, having taken more nurofen and migraine pills.



I woke up dreaming about Nacho chips (my faves). Weird – but apparently quite normal. I dragged my legs out of bed, and hauled myself to work. I felt extremely tired, lethargic and slightly headachy. I couldn’t tell what was MEGADEATH COLD and what was Whole 30 related.

I had my Salmon frittata and a banana for breakfast at work (sorry to my co-workers for the early morning fishy smell), and then snacked on ½ an apple with 1 tsp almond butter and a small packet of Urban Fruit dried superberries during the morning. I was bored and couldn’t stop thinking about food. Food. Food. FOOOOD. I had to take a nurofen at 11am for the headache, and tried to drink herbal tea to keep my hands busy and stop thinking about FOOD!

Lunchtime couldn’t come soon enough, but when it did, I tucked into my turkey salad, and finished off the other half of the apple with almond butter. I decided to take a cold & flu tablet in the afternoon to clear my head, which did help me feel better. I was still hungry/snacky, so I nibbled on 15 almonds, carrot sticks and cherry tomatoes. Food. Food. FOOOOD!

I was ravenous by the time I got home and couldn’t wait for dinner (which was deconstructed burgers with fried eggs, yum) – but almost as soon as I had finished eating I was ready for bed. I fell asleep almost immediately, I just could not keep my eyes open – but then didn’t have a great sleep, as I was feverish and restless.



I was starting to wonder if the crappy feeling would ever end – and luckily on day 4 I started to pick up a bit (the crappy feeling seemed to be more from the megadeathcold, rather than anything Whole 30 related).

I started the morning with frittata, a handful of grapes and a herbal tea, snacking on a small bag of cashews for morning tea. I felt like I had more energy, and wasn’t anywhere near as hungry as Day 3 – instead I felt satisfied after my meals and didn’t crave anything.

Lunch was salad with leftover burger patties, a handful of fresh cherries and grapes and more herbal tea.

My first major social challenge hit me on Day 4 too. I was invited (last minute) to see the new Cirque Du Soleil’s dress rehearsal at the Royal Albert Hall. Of course I said YES but then panicked about what I could eat on the run – as I would have to go straight to the venue from work. Luckily in my handbag and on my desk were enough snacks to conjure up a meal – which I ate on my way and during the show. I had a banana, an apple, a small packet of cashew nuts, carrot sticks and cherry tomatoes and felt satisfied and full (although I knew I was lacking in protein).

Kooza was fantastic too – highly recommend it!



It’s the weekend! Of course, the weekend brings even more social challenges, so I decided to act like a hermit and make no plans – just in case. I started off with frittata, a banana, and some grapes which kept me satisfied through until lunch time. Interestingly enough – I found no need to snack in the weekend – whereas when I am bored at my desk during the week, I seem to need/want/crave snacks? Emotional eating right there?

We decided to meet a friend in the afternoon, so I made sure my lunch was protein and fat packed. I had a salad with a whole avocado, two boiled eggs and a can of tuna. I couldn’t finish it!

While we were out and about, I resisted the amazing smelling coffee and went for a sparkling water, and then a green tea. The only tough part was when Jase ‘accidentally’ ordered himself a huge chocolate brownie, and the smell infiltrated my nostrils and brain and I couldn’t stop staring at it. But I was feeling good, and I didn’t want to ruin my Whole 30!

Dinner was a chicken green curry and some dried mango pieces to finish.



I was a bit over the frittata by this point, so I made scrambled eggs, with sautéed mushrooms – and my big treat for the week – Whole 30 approved bacon that I had found at Waitrose (ingredients= pork, salt).

Again, I was heading out around lunchtime (I can now see why so many meals were previously eaten on the run!) so I had an orange as I was leaving. I managed to find a reasonable meal at Starbucks – a banana, a fruit pot and a bag of mixed nuts (no peanuts). I also had my first black coffee – it wasn’t too bad, but I think in the future I would prefer a delicious herbal tea instead. I LOVE coffee so much that I figure unless it is going to be in its perfect milky goodness – I may as well avoid it.

We stopped again at a café, and I chose sparkling water and a bag of Tyrrells Vege crisps. While the vege crisps are technically Whole 30 ingredients wise (beetroot, parsnip, carrot, sunflower oil and salt) (EDITED: Sunflower oil ISN’T Whole30 compliant, so these are now a no-go!), they aren’t part of the plan as they are still a ‘junk food’ – which means they should be eliminated. The Whole 30 isn’t just about eating real food, it’s also about breaking emotional ties to food.

I felt really really good on Sunday. My energy was up, my skin was clear and I was starting to recover from my cold. I didn’t have any major hunger pains – but again, was apprehensive about going out at lunch time about what to eat and where to get it from. My sleep still hadn’t been great, so hopefully that kicks in in the next few days!

I finished the weekend by spending three hours in the kitchen, cooking up a storm for the week ahead. I actually found preparing all my food very relaxing. We finished the weekend with a scrummy meal – Sauteed spinach, baked salmon fillet and broccoli with toasted almonds. It was SO good.



Apart from it being Monday (which always sucks) I was feeling pretty good. I had had a terrible night’s sleep, so was tired – but no headaches or aches and pains.

Breakfast was frittata and a banana, followed by a salad for lunch with 5 Asian meatballs. I also chewed on carrot sticks, cherry tomatoes and an apple. During the afternoon I kept the hunger at bay with a small handful of coconut pieces and more herbal tea.

I hadn’t specifically planned anything for dinner, and our grocery order wasn’t being delivered until late (side note: ordering groceries online is a lifesaver these days!). So I chopped up what veges we still had (a carrot & 2 zucchinis) and fried them up with two cans of chopped tomatoes, and about 20 Asian meatballs. After adding mixed herbs and some chilli powder I ended up with a delicious bowl of tomatoey meatballs.

I hit the pillow at 9pm and slept soundly right through until my alarm went off. I woke up feeling refreshed and like I had more energy…could this be the Day 7-11 MAGIC that has been alluded to?


Stay tuned for Whole 30 – Week Two! I’ll post some links and recipes laster this week so you can get cooking too.

Want to know more about the Whole 30? Read my blog posts or visit www.whole9life.com:

Starting the Whole 30


  1. Lauren (@PoweredbyPB) January 13, 2013 / 10:04 pm

    This is really interesting to look at! There’s no way I couldn’t snack between meals, I love snacking! I have done online shopping for the first time the last two weeks, totally agree- lifesaver! Interested to hear how the rest of your month goes!
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    • Leah January 14, 2013 / 11:21 am

      I think I spend less by doing our groceries online too – but then sometimes it does mean extra trips to the shops to pick up forgotten bits here and there. But I love it, purely for the time it saves me – I did the groceries the other morning without even getting out of bed!

      Stay tuned for more updates soon!

      • Emma January 14, 2013 / 9:07 pm

        Isn’t internet grocery wonderfully freeing, especially when you don’t have a car. I’ve ordered groceries whilst on holiday in New Zealand, to be delivered upon our return at home in London!
        We try and order groceries fortnightly/3 weekly and get organic vege boxed delivered in between.
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  2. Ffion @ Chocolate and Raspberries January 13, 2013 / 10:14 pm

    You found whole 30 approved bacon in Waitrose? With no sulphites? Exciting! What was the brand? Looks like you are really getting into the wing of things by now! I caught a cold on day two of going paleo too, and felt crappy till about day 4, but believe me, it gets better! By the way, sunflower oil isn’t paleo, especially if heated!
    Ffion @ Chocolate and Raspberries recently posted..Looking back at 2012My Profile

    • Leah January 14, 2013 / 11:18 am

      Yup – the bacon was an organic brand, but I can’t for the life of me remember the name. I should have taken a photo of it. I only found it in a really big Waitrose near my house, but haven’t seen it since. You are right – Sunflower oil isn’t Whole30 allowed, so no more of those treats for me. I also found out that Strepsils aren’t Whole30 compliant – but I was willing to compromise on those and let them help me.

      How are you getting on?

      • Ffion @ Chocolate and Raspberries January 14, 2013 / 11:25 am

        I think it took me less time to get used to being paleo this time, but after doing my first challenge in September, I was mostly paleo in October and November too, so I think my body s used to it. I used to make a few ‘paleo treats’ as snacks which were really useful for when on the move, so I’m struggling with snacks as I don’t want to eat too much fruit either. I really must have snacks too, even if I ate my breakfast and my usual snack in one sitting, I know I’d be hungry again before lunch, so it’s just what works for me!

        Too bad about the strepsils, but if you’re ill, you’re ill! Maybe try mugs of hot ginger and lemon (honey would be more natural than strepsils), gargling with salt water, and swallowing raw garlic – it helps I swear, just cut into tiny chunks, and swallow with water like a pill. I hope you feel better soon!
        Ffion @ Chocolate and Raspberries recently posted..Looking back at 2012My Profile

        • Leah January 14, 2013 / 6:03 pm

          I’m not really referring to this as ‘paleo’ because for me, it’s about the 30 day reset. If I decide to continue eating this way after the 30 days then I might start saying I am paleo haha!

          Yeah, fruit is definitely the easy go-to for snacks – I am guilty of this as well! I am trying to have more carrot sticks, cherry tomatoes, boiled eggs, or meatballs as snacks instead – but fruit is always just so darn handy! I figure that so long as I am eating on plan, then snacks are all good.

          Yeah I looked into natural cold remedys – but I couldn’t even get out of bed and the strepsils were in reach. I have heard apple cider vinegar is a good gargle too! Luckily my killer throat pain is subsiding and I am just a hot snotty mess now. Wonderful! Haha!

  3. Donna June 8, 2015 / 1:57 am

    I’m just researching whole30 now. Your site is very useful and frankly, the food sounds very good.

    Question: Portions are not mentioned. Am I to presume one can eat as much as you want as long as it is “approved” foods? As many eggs/ground beef/steak etc as you want?

    How about the ground meats: any requirements as far as %fat etc?

    Thanks for your help.

    Is it calorie based in any way?

    • Leah June 8, 2015 / 3:48 pm

      Hi Donna, that is awesome that you are interested in the Whole 30. If you decide it’s the right thing for you, it’s pretty life changing! The food is excellent and your taste buds really come alive. I’ll try and answer your questions, but I would also suggest you visit whole30.com where all this stuff is covered. Portions are mentioned and there is a cheat sheet for how much you should try and have based on your hand size (ie a thumb of healthy fats, a palm full of protein). In saying that, only you will know what you need to eat in order to NOT be hungry – sometimes that is more and sometimes that is less. I always find I eat bigger portions to begin with, and then my hunger stabilises and I need less as the days go on. So while it’s not “as many as you want” unlimited portions, it’s also not a restricted calorie controlled diet at all. I hope that helps, and good luck! I’d love to hear how you get on!

  4. Donna June 8, 2015 / 2:01 am

    Oh yes, forgot to ask about coffee. I loved throng black coffee. Is coffee forbidden if there is nothing in it?

    • Leah June 8, 2015 / 3:49 pm

      Black coffee is 100% ok! Some people make their own nut milk to include in it, but I think once you go black, why bother with a milk 🙂

  5. Donna June 20, 2015 / 4:44 pm

    LOL. Thanks for the info. Am giving serious thought to starting after 4th of July.

    BTW.,,,my father had huge hands and gave them to me as well. Does that increase my portion size? (Just kidding!!!!)

    Thanks for your assistance.

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